DIY Aircon

A mate of mine just did a DIY aircon install, so I talked him into writing it up for the wiki. Seems like a good result:
http://wiki.diyfaq.org.uk/index.php/Split-type_Room_Air_Conditioner
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John.
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An interesting read, thanks John.
A query, if you wouldn't mind asking your friend:-
Did the units have the connection points to support purging and leak testing with a vacuum pump?
Thanks
Mike
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On 02/08/2017 09:54, jones_michael snipped-for-privacy@yahoo.co.uk wrote:

Richard says:
"The copper pipes connect to two valves on the outdoor unit. The valve for the larger pipe has a T-branch, closed by a screw-on cap and with a Schrader type valve inside. This valve lets the DIY person bleed the air out of the system during setting up. I'll make a guess, a vacuum pump, pressure gauge or a source of gas for maintenance connects here (
(a guess, but there's nowhere else obvious)"
http://wiki.diyfaq.org.uk/index.php/File:AirConCompValveLocation.png
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On Wednesday, August 2, 2017 at 12:50:43 PM UTC+1, John Rumm wrote:

That's great.
Thanks John & Richard
Mike
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Excellent, thank you!
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On 01/08/2017 23:15, John Rumm wrote:

Thanks (to both of you).
One small, tangential, thought: would it be worth adding a _brief_ point on planning permission? Cock-shy:
Planning permission
You currently don't need it in England and Wales if:
it's reversible (so it's a heat pump) in residential property which is not listed the outdoor unit is less than 0.6m3 and at least 1m from the boundary.
It's permitted development. Scotland is similar but different.
Of course that's no guarantee neighbours won't complain about the noise.
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On 02/08/2017 11:42, Robin wrote:

I had a look on the planning portal site, and that seems to be a subset of the requirements for installation of a air source heat pump under permitted development - but that does specify one *only* used for heating. It does not seem to mention much on AC/Heat Pump installs.

Richard said: "The planning permission and the sensibility of discussing plans with the neighbours are good points, but I'd prefer to describe how the regulations apply to me and what I discussed with the neighbours. I had an alternative location for the outdoor unit but they actually preferred the location for the outdoor unit which I felt would be more noisy to them."
(having heard it myself - its almost silent anyway, so probably non issue for small units like this)
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On 02/08/2017 12:55, John Rumm wrote:

Yep, I cocked it up. I saw the regs. were silent on a/c so asked my council's planning helpline. They said the air sourced heat pumps could be run in reverse - as they had to be for defrosting. So I left it at that and started talking to neighbours, found one lot *not* happy and gave up until they come around.

Very fair, and wd be helpful.

.
When it's a Victorian terrace I fear "almost" is not a convincing point :( I'm hoping things will get better over time if they hear modern split systems to displace their memories of US-style boxes-in-a-window.
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On Wednesday, 2 August 2017 14:51:56 UTC+1, Robin wrote:

I've added some details of noise from the system into the write-up. I think it's worthwhile directing the sound along the barrier not across it.
It occurs to me - it might be possible to reduce the sound levels further b y accepting a more intrusive footprint and installing the outdoor unit at a right angle to the wall of the building, and also away from other reflecti ng surfaces. Another approach might be to put the outdoor unit further away from the wall and place a sound-absorbing (and weatherproof) material behi nd it.
When the weather gets a bit more extreme (hot or cold) and the system needs to do more work, maybe it will get louder.
Hope this helps.
- Richard.
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I have a split unit I fitted 12 years ago. I was chatting to a new neighbour over the fence, when he noticed the unit. He asked, "How noisy is that when it's on?" to which I responded, "It is on."
You can hear it if you are standing next to it, but not if you are halfway across the garden.
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On Wednesday, 2 August 2017 11:42:15 UTC+1, Robin wrote:

I've added a section on planning permission - the legislation for England a nd the section and clauses in it which apply to me. It would all rather sno wball if I try to deal with other locations and scenarios, but I would hope anyone planning their own system would realise they need to find out which rules apply to them.
I think, I am so lucky to have such nice neighbours.
- Richard.
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On Tuesday, 1 August 2017 23:15:22 UTC+1, John Rumm wrote:

"the flanges for hanging the equipment are simply too weak to stop them sagging under the weight of the unit"
is it safe to leave it in that condition? Might it not fall off completely eventually?
Also, is an electrical isolator required at the outside unit, or a lockable isolator inside?
Owain
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On 02/08/2017 12:08, snipped-for-privacy@gowanhill.com wrote:

I guess time will tell. I presume its unlikely since they are probably sold a fair few of these over time.

That would be a good argument for dedicated circuit from the CU (so it could be locked off there) - although that is not strictly isolation.
For a domestic install running from a plug it seems like a non issue.
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On 02/08/2017 13:02, John Rumm wrote:

Mine wanted a 20A feed. Its only 1600W but I suppose they think it might trip a smaller circuit.
I also did the easy option and bolted the outside unit to a couple of 3x2 paving slabs.
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Compressor motor can pull a large switch-on surge. That was also another reason to have it on a different circuit, to reduce impact on other appliances of the momentary voltage sag (used to be particularly noticable with filament lamps). The surge can be quite long too if the motor doesn't start (which is quite common if the system still has residual dynamic pressure in it from the previous run).
Mine is also around 1500W, but the locked rotor power is 4500W, and it tries for around 5 seconds before giving up and waiting a bit longer for the dynamic pressure to equalise out in the system.

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Andrew Gabriel
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On Wednesday, 2 August 2017 12:08:13 UTC+1, snipped-for-privacy@gowanhill.com wrote:

I've rewritten the description of the wall bracket (a poor choice of wording) and plumped up the electrical section ... hope this is better.
- Richard.
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On 8/1/2017 11:15 PM, John Rumm wrote:

As I was sweltering in my main bedroom a few weeks ago I thought I really ought to get on and do this. Would want a reversible one for the winter.
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On 02/08/17 16:08, newshound wrote:

I'd have to say - I'd be tempted to fit one at some point as it's straightforward (the hole through the double brick cavity wall would be the biggest PITA).
I have really hated some of the recent sweltering nights.
John's point on planning is a good one though...
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I used to chain drill and knock through with a cold chisel for this kind of thing, but I decided that life was too short and started hiring a core drill from the local tool hire place. Takes longer to go and fetch it than drill the hole.

We have a monobloc one. Pretty old, very, very noisy, and not as effective as a split unit, but it blows cold air! I drilled a 110mm hole through the wall for the exhaust.
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On 02/08/17 18:17, Huge wrote:

How long did the core drilling actually take, out of interest? I need to put a boiler flue in of similar size...
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